How To Use Building Blocks Towards Our Global Future

How To Use Building Blocks Towards Our Global FutureWe have a choice. We can futilely try to protect ourselves and our families behind high walls, electric gates, etc., and turn a blind eye toward chronic human rights violations and an economic globalization that is not accountable to anyone. Or we can join with people and organizations from all the world's nations to lay the foundations for...

History and the Golden Rule Point Us to the Future

History and the Golden Rule Point Us to the FutureHow to effect regime change without war was demonstrated by the nonviolent revolution in India led by Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhi pioneered satyagraha, the resistance of tyranny through mass nonviolent civil disobedience. Positive change occurs when committed people work for it...

Why We Shouldn't Dismiss The Bilderberg Conspiracies

Dresden, the setting of Bilderberg 2016. Jiuguang Wang, CC BY-SAWe live in an age of conspiracies about a world shaped by shadowy plots, secret organisations and deals made behind closed doors. And while they are often viewed as the fictions of sad people wearing anoraks and tin foil hats, they can relate to the real business of global politics.

Can We Replace Politicians With Robots?

Can We Replace Politicians With Robots?If you had the opportunity to vote for a politician you totally trusted, who you were sure had no hidden agendas and who would truly represent the electorate’s views, you would, right?

American Elections Are Ranked Worst Among Western Democracies

American Elections Are Ranked Worst Among Western DemocraciesThe world is currently transfixed by the spectacle of American elections.  From New York, London and Paris to Beijing, Moscow, and Sydney there is endless heated debate in the news media and across dinner tables about the factors fueling the remarkable success of Donald Trump

How 5 Prisons Are Improving Life On The Inside

Inmates label trays and replant seedlings in a Conservation Nursery Program hoop house at the Washington Corrections Center for Women. Photo by Benjamin Drummond/Sara Joy SteeleFor the roughly 2.2 million people incarcerated in U.S. prisons and jails, daily life is often violent, degrading, and hopeless. In a 2010 study of inmates released from 30 prisons, the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics found that more than three-quarters were arrested for a new crime within five years of being freed.

How Journalists Can Start Winning The Battle Against Politicians' Lies

How Journalists Can Start Winning The Battle Against Politicians' LiesPoliticians lie. To varying degrees, they always have. But it is starting to seem that that truism is more true than it has ever been. In 2012, American political commentator Charles P. Pierce claimed that the Republican Party was setting out in search of the “event horizon of utter bullshit” at its national convention that year.

How Bernie Sanders Really Is Changing Democracy

How Bernie Sanders Really Is Changing DemocracyAfter months of expectation, US senator and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has at last given what might be remembered as one of the landmark speeches of the 2016 election: an explanation and defence of his position as a “democratic socialist”.

Modern Trade Agreements Are Designed To Circumvent Pesky Labor, Environment And Health Laws

Modern Trade Agreements Are Designed To Circumvent Pesky Labor, Environment And Health LawsWhat if a trade agreement were designed to protect and nurture labor rather than capital? On May 8th at Nike’s headquarters, President Obama denounced opponents of the hotly contested Trans-Pacific Partnership as ill informed. “(C)ritics warn that parts of this deal would undermine American regulation….They’re making this stuff up.  This is just not true.  No trade agreement is going to force us to change our laws.”

Why Finland Sets The Benchmark For Education Worldwide

Why Finland Sets The Benchmark For Education Worldwide

When looking at large-scale international studies and comparisons of education systems worldwide, everyone’s always talking about Finland. Finland seems to set the benchmark for education worldwide. Foreign educational experts, delegations of teachers and educational politicians...

Did Gandhi Win? How Social Movements Effect Change

How Did Gandhi Win? How Social Movements Effect Change

For those who seek to understand today’s social movements, and those who wish to amplify them, questions about how to evaluate a campaign’s success and when it is appropriate to declare victory remain as relevant as ever. To them, Gandhi may still have something useful and unexpected to say. 

The Human Imprint: Large in Human and Biological Events

The Human Imprint: Large in Human and Biological Events

While in the timeframe of Earth’s lifespan human events are relatively short, the imprint of even small, collective action is large. A good example in relation to food and the environment is the impact of the Neolithic revolution of farming on who we are today and the world in which we live.

Should We Fight The System or Be The Change?

Should We Fight The System Or Be The Change?

It is an old question in social movements: Should we fight the system or “be the change we wish to see”? Should we push for transformation within existing institutions, or should we model in our own lives a different set of political relationships that might someday form the basis of a new society?

Are Lectures Really The Best Way To Learn?

Are Lectures A Good Way To learn?

Research study compares traditional lectures with active learning in science, engineering and mathematics. Traditional lecture-based courses are correlated with significantly poorer performance in terms of failure rates and marks.

Social Change Needed at the Checkout Counter

Social Change Needed at the Checkout Counter

The girl behind the checkout counter at the Shop Rite supermarket sighed deeply and pushed her manager call button. “WIC,” the checkout girl said, turning the three letters that stand for the government-funded supplemental nutrition program in the USA into a long whine...

The Math Error Behind 30 Years of Education Policy

The Math Error Behind 30 Years of Education Policy

The push to reform America’s failing schools dates to a 1983 report, “A Nation at Risk,” which found that U.S. students’ test scores were plummeting. The study's failure to consider factors like poverty, race, and immigration concealed the fact that scores were actually improving.

Peaceful Revolution? Gandhi’s Four Paths to Get There

Peaceful Revolution? Gandhi’s Four Paths to Get There

The Indian leader saw nonviolence as an active and powerful thing — not just the absence of war. Gandhi lived Ahimsa as a daily practice, waging peace to stop war and violence. His lifelong “experiments” with truth proved that truth force is more powerful than brute force.

The Real Debate Over American Citizenship

The Real Debate Over American Citizenship

On one side are those who think of citizenship as a matter of exclusion and privilege — of protecting the nation by keeping out those who are undesirable, and putting strict limits on who is allowed to exercise the full rights of citizenship. On the other are those who think of citizenship inclusively...

Hunger & Poverty: What We Can Do About It

Hunger & Poverty: What We Can Do About It

Just as spending on social housing for homeless people has been widely proven to be more cost-effective than leaving people on the streets, so too is spending on food being proven as a way to save costs. Healthy eating prevents chronic diseases among people of all ages, from pre-school children to...

Root Causes of Unitive and Punitive Justice: Oneness and Duality

Root Causes of Unitive and Punitive Justice: Oneness and Duality

We are so accustomed to the status quo that we think this is how it has to be. Old institutions are tenacious, and they have long tentacles rooted in history and in a multitude of choices made by our ancestors. Law, history, religion, science, and culture all play a role in keeping us entrenched in dysfunctional structures...

2012: One Small Step For the Mayan Calendar

Swami’s State of the Universe 2012

Back here on earth, the human comedy has been renewed for yet another season. Maybe 2012 will be the year a critical mass of the heretofore-uncritical masses wake up and hear the laugh track. That’s right, the laugh track. In these serious times when there’s definitely something funny going on, laughter is key. You laugh, and I say, “Fabulous. You’re off to a good start.”

Can Meditation be a Tool to Help Prisoners Outgrow Crime?

Can Meditation be a Tool to Help Prisoners Outgrow Crime?

What should be done about prisoners? Should society lock them up and throw away the key? Or should we try to rehabilitate them (indeed, is it possible to do so)? Balancing the safety of society with the rights of prisoners is an old problem — and different solutions have been proposed.  At this time, however...

Decriminalization: A Step in the Right Direction

Decriminalization: A Step in the Right Direction, article by Julie Holland, M.D.

It doesn’t take an expert to see that things are very wrong with the current legal status of cannabis. Our government says there is no accepted medical use for it, yet it holds a patent (#6630507) for medicinal use of cannabinoids as antioxidants and neuroprotectants, and it distributes canisters of rolled joints to a few select patients in the...

A Maverick Judge "For The People"?

Federal judge Jed Rakoff, a former prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney’s office here in New York, is fast becoming a sort of legal hero of our time. He showed that again yesterday when he shat all over the SEC’s latest dirty settlement with serial fraud offender Citigroup, refusing to let the captured regulatory agency sweep yet another case of high-level criminal malfeasance under the rug.

Bill Moyers on US Politics: Tony Soprano Style

Public Citizen, a non-profit consumer rights group, celebrated 40 years of progress with a festive gala on Thursday, October 20, 2011. Nearly 600 friends and supporters shared the night as PC reflected on decades of amazing accomplishments and looked to the future.

Making a Difference in Small or Big Ways

Making a Difference in Small or Big WaysMost people agree on what they want out of life. They want the basics -- food, clothing, shelter, health. They want a beautiful and healthy environment. They want opportunities -- education, jobs, and personal growth. They want dignity, a spiritual life, love, peace...

Exploring Common Ground

People can no longer leave sociocultural, as well as economic, decisions to a few controllers, while themselves concentrating on a range of personal problems from the search for shelter to a good vacation spot. We now need to admit that each of us must be concerned with the total situation of our society...

Profit, Power, and Progress?

Responsible profit taking is honorable. Those who are legitimate producers deserve to be rewarded for their earnest contributions. It is when profit taking replaces concern for others or for ecosystems that a perversity occurs whereby everyone and everything suffers. At that point, we are not evolving but devolving...

Ancient Times--New Times

Many people like to look back on history, glean from it what they can, and apply it to their everyday lives. This is done to avoid repeating past mistakes. There has been much benefit from this approach.

Politics As Usual?

by bobby jennings. The 2000 Republican Presidential primary was like a return of a nightmare for me. My personal conflict with the "Religious Right" came at the height of their power in 1985 when I finally decided to move my membership to the largest Baptist Church in Orlando.

Freedom of Speech

The point of freedom of speech was to allow varying political and social views to be aired so that people's desires and opinions could effect social change - it all sounded marvelous. Nowadays, we still have freedom of speech, providing you don't disagree with or touch upon any one of a hundred or so subjects that are considered taboo.

Failure of Brand USA

When the White House decided it was time to address the rising tides of anti-Americanism around the world, it didn't look to a career diplomat for help. Instead, in keeping with the Bush administration's philosophy that anything the public sector can do the private sector can do better, it hired one of Madison Avenue's top brand managers.

Emancipatory Spirituality

We are in the midst of an extraordinary upsurge of interest in the realm of the Spirit. Tens of millions of people in advanced industrial societies live at a level of material well-being that far surpasses the luxuries and comforts available to kings, queens, and nobles just a few hundred years ago. But many of these are in the vanguard of those who seek a new spiritual reality.

Open Letter of Conscience and Choice

by Robert Rabbin, John Robbins, Rabbi Michael Lerner, Dan Millman, Tom Hayden, et al. There are times in life when we must act. And when those moments come, we must act with our truest heart, our clearest mind, and our noblest intentions. November 2 is such a time. On that day, we will take in hand one of the tools for social transformation. We will exercise our right to vote and our responsibility to voice our values and conscience. We will choose a new president and vice president. We, the signers of this letter, after full consideration, careful study, and deep reflection, endorse and recommend John Kerry and John Edwards for these offices. We urge all of you to vote for them. This is a matter of great importance and urgency.

Congress for Life The Problem of Careerism in Congress and a Case For Term Limits

For our first 125 years, about 35 percent of the members of the House retired before every election, because they believed that was good for them and good for the nation. This does not mean that pure altruism was at work here. In the first century, congressmen had not yet learned the art of feathering their own nests with hundred-thousand-dollar salaries, million-dollar pensions, large and obsequious staffs, and all the perks and privileges that power is heir to. In short, remaining in Congress for decades was not as attractive then as now.